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In one case where mentors were recruited directly by the LEA, the opportunity was advertised in schools and mentors were appointed after a written application. In this authority, EPD teachers were deliberately assigned mentors who were in different schools and several EPD teachers were allocated to each mentor with the intention that joint meetings between the mentor and all of the teachers would allow the sharing of good practice and the provision of mutual support. There were mixed feelings, however, about these arrangements. Drawbacks were mainly associated with issues of communication, the lack of day-to-day support and the difficulty essays writing service of arranging meetings.
Turning now to those LEAs where the arrangement of mentoring fell to schools, in the first year of the EPD pilot, the most common method by which mentors had come to take on the role was following an approach from the school senior management team.
Although this largely dltk custom writing paper continued to be the case, in year 2 and year 3 mentors would often simply carry on with their role from the previous year (rather than new mentors being appointed). When teachers were asked in the survey to rate the extent of their involvement in selecting their mentor, fewer than one-fifth of EPD teachers each year indicated that they had been closely involved in the decision. Moreover, this proportion decreased slightly over the course of the pilot. To take year 3 as an example, as Table 20 shows, just over half of those who were closely involved in selecting a mentor found their mentoring to be very helpful, compared with less than i need help with my college essay one-quarter of those who were not involved at all. This finding suggests that the effects of mentoring could have been maximised if teachers had had greater input in the selection of their mentor.
Overall, around 90 per essays writing service cent were responsible for four teachers or fewer. The mean average number of EPD teachers per mentor rose from two in the first year of the study to three in the final year. Mentors in secondary schools were found (on average) to mentor more teachers (three) than mentors at primary level (two). However, an important corollary of this was that those who mentored more EPD teachers also experienced greater difficulties in terms of finding the time to meet with them and the impact on their own workload. This highlights the challenge of balancing EPD teacher and mentor outcomes and the manageability of the scheme for mentors. It is clear from the evaluation that managing the practicalities of providing mentors for teachers early in their careers can have considerable benefits for teachers. Having dealt with aspects related to the general management of mentoring, the following section examines mentoring as experienced by teachers. Thus, in this section, the frequency of these meetings is addressed first, followed by consideration of the additional duties that the mentors performed as part of their role. The frequency of meetings between teachers and mentors In the case-study schools, the majority of EPD teachers described a two-tiered approach to mentoring whereby they had occasional formal meetings backed up by more frequent informal discussions and support.
The number of dedicated EPD-related meetings that a teacher reported having with their mentor was found to be significantly associated, in each year of the pilot, with the extent to which they rated mentoring as helpful for their professional development. The clear message here is that in general terms, 110 PART FOUR EPD teachers appreciated the additional support of regular meetings with their mentor. The focus of EPD mentoring The case-study interviews provided considerable detail about the specific focus and style of guidance that the EPD teachers had received from their mentors.
Three main spheres of mentor support were apparent. Mentors also sometimes took responsibility for identifying and booking courses, or making practical arrangements. They were generally well informed about the scheme and its operation, but were not necessarily teachers within the same year group (primary) or subject area (secondary). This type of support was provided through discussion, lesson observations, and practical help with elements of teaching including classroom management, lesson planning and assessment. Those performing this type of mentor role were often more experienced teachers working in the same subject area or year group as the teacher they mentored, and with whom the EPD teacher could work closely, on an ongoing and often informal basis. This type of mentoring relied on EPD teachers and their mentors being able to develop a close working relationship where both parties were able to be open, and often involved frequent informal discussions. The case-study data also essays writing service revealed mechanisms by which EPD teachers were able to compensate for types of support that were not adequately provided by their mentor. This points to the shared responsibility that can be taken by schools, and members of staff within schools, to support the professional development of teachers early in their careers. Ill PART FOUR Characteristics of effective mentoring To conclude this discussion of the mentoring relationship, this section outlines the views put forward by interviewees in the case-study schools about the main features that characterised an effective mentor. Responses from both EPD teachers and mentors themselves fell into three overarching essays writing service categories - the duties mentors performed as part of their mentoring role, their personal characteristics, and finally, their experience. With reference to the duties mentors performed as part of their role, interviewees felt that a mentor who was able to make time for teachers and prioritise the mentoring relationship amongst their other duties within the school was an effective one.